Alfredo Motta

Not So Random Software #4 – Gratefulness

With the festivity season kicking-in, I have been thinking about gratefulness. As technologists, we are one of the luckiest professionals in the world. To be grateful is an important reminder that helps us feel fulfilled, happy and helps us define our purpose — even when you are just fixing an obscure bug no one else really understands.

A random tool

Journaling is great to help you practice gratefulness. I have done it for one year now and I wonder why I haven’t started sooner. I must say that daily is very challenging, and it is also subject to recency bias. I found that weekly on Monday is the best time to be grateful for your weekend and the last week of work. I use Evernote for that, but if you are more adventorous you should try Joplin. It is open-source and you take back control of your data.

A random line of code

Have you ever used Rational in Ruby? If you wonder how deep this rabbit hole is, have fun with this link.

A random video or podcast

The latest Sandi Metz’s keynote at Rubyconf talks about how lucky professional programmers are and how much our demographics correlate with earnings. And if you happen to be white, male, born in a developed country and grown up in a good neighbourhood… Lucky you. I am one of them. What are we doing daily to actively fight inequality and share our luck with more people?

A random article or paper

Why Engineers are grumpy? This article by an ex-Yahoo engineer and open source maintainer of ESLint helps us explore this question in detail. When engineers are left out of the creative solution building, and stakeholders assume things must be easy… grumpiness kicks in. My advice is to share how you feel when you are left out of the creative solution building. Ask to be involved. At the same time be mindful of making people participate in the building process. Make your work visible. It’s a team sport.

A random book

How can you take care of yourself if when you get back home you are so tired that all you can do is to crush on the sofa? Having plenty of time in the morning before going to work helped me transform my life for the better. The Miracle Morning is a good motivational book to start. I consumed it as an audiobook and it worked well for me.

A random quote

Citizens of a democracy are collectively responsible for what their society allows; they have a special duty towards those it systematically fails, and this burden falls most heavily on those most amply rewarded.

Chiara Cordelli, Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago

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